Publisher: Little, Brown
Publication Date: December 24, 2013
It's time to meet your new roomie.
When East Coast native Elizabeth receives her freshman-year roommate assignment, she shoots off an e-mail to coordinate the basics: television, microwave, mini-fridge. That first note to San Franciscan Lauren sparks a series of e-mails that alters the landscape of each girl's summer -- and raises questions about how two girls who are so different will ever share a dorm room.
As the countdown to college begins, life at home becomes increasingly complex. With family relationships and childhood friendships strained by change, it suddenly seems that the only people Elizabeth and Lauren can rely on are the complicated new boys in their lives . . . and each other. Even though they've never met.
National Book Award finalist Sara Zarr and acclaimed author Tara Altebrando join forces for a novel about growing up, leaving home, and getting that one fateful e-mail that assigns your college roommate.
I really liked the alternating points of view. Some remarked (and I silently agreed) that you can't tell who wrote each character, and it's totally true. Sara and Tara write very well together, to the point of being indistinguishable. But that doesn't mean that the characters were as such! I actually found Elizabeth and Lauren to be very well done - they had very different personalities, and I loved how they clashed and didn't. It made for a very interesting friendship.
At first, I honestly wasn't even sure that they were going to be friends, because I actually didn't like Lauren all that much. But I'm proud to say that she grew on me throughout the book. There came a point when I just couldn't choose between them, because I loved them both as characters!
I loved the idea that future "roomies" were emailing each other. It was an interesting concept. Their stories intertwined so well, and their personalities were so different that it was fun to read between the lines with them. Lauren was a lot more blunt that Elizabeth, which meant she didn't always think things through before she said them; and Elizabeth was a lot more... she was such an overthinker! Sometimes I just wanted to be all like "STAHP GIRLY IT'S NOT THAT COMPLICATED!" to her. I mean, I kind of think that she needed that!
My only real problem with this book is how much they hurt each other. I mean, I know that people make mistakes and it's a fact of life, but they both did some things that I didn't really approve of. Sadly. On another note, I enjoyed the romances. Lauren and Elizabeth both have completely different lives, but I enjoyed the fact that they were going through a lot of the same things. It helped them to relate to each other, which was great. And, like I said, the romances. So cute! They weren't particularly rushed, and I feel like each character got a chance to get to know the other. Adorable!
I liked the separate dramas. Elizabeth's with her mom and dad, and Lauren's with her big family. I loved Lauren's family, they gave her a certain depth. I felt like her family really made her a better character. I also liked the open ending. I'm not usually a fan, but it just fit for Roomies!
All in all, I enjoyed this one. I would recommend it, but only if you don't mind reading character driven books.